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Financial Aid

Students applying to  graduate specializations in the department of English have three options for pursuing financial aid.

Department Assistantships

DEADLINE: All applications for graduate assistantships must be received no later than February 21 for assistantships beginning in the following year. 

Application Instructions

Application

English Department GAs usually teach composition and work in the Writing Center, and anywhere from 5 to 10 such "teaching GAs" are hired annually. Additionally, the Department employs a GA to assist the editors of Sou'wester; this GA position is available irregularly. Students interested in serving as an editing GA must contact, prior to the GA application deadline, the editors of Sou'wester and must make sure their application materials clearly indicate their interest in editorial work. 

Graduate Assistantships are for the nine-month academic year and provide both a modest stipend and a waiver of tuition, including one summer semester. Assistants must take two graduate-level classes each semester. The teaching load is usually one course in one semester and two courses in the other, with some work in the Writing Center during the semester in which a GA is teaching only one course. It is possible to complete the MA program in two years while working as a GA, since the Department offers graduate-level courses in the summer term. English GAs are usually limited to two years' employment, and must be classified, not unclassified, graduate students. 

The SIUE Graduate School website has more information on Graduate Assistantships, including course load requirements and detailed financial information. Note that, as with the Competitive Graduate Award, only graduate-level classes (those at the 400 or 500 level) count toward meeting the minimum courseload requirement for Graduate Assistantships, which is two classes (six credit hours) per term. Excellent English language skills are a requirement of the position. Graduate students from outside the United States are welcome to apply.

Students applying simultaneously to the English Graduate Program and for a Graduate Assistantship must submit TWO SEPARATE application dossiers: one for the Graduate Program, and a separate one for the Graduate Assistantship.  

As explained in more detail on the instructions and application form, the GA application dossier is a completely separate process than the admission process and requires separate documents and submission. While the two dossiers may be identical, it is to your advantage to "tailor" them; your GA application dossier, for example, may be stronger if it contains letters of recommendation that address your prospects for teaching success (or editing skills, if applicable), while letters in the Graduate Program application dossier may stress the likelihood of your success in academic research and writing. Your personal statements could also reflect those different concerns. 

Competitive Graduate Award (CGA)

Deadline: December 2

The Competitive Graduate Award, or CGA, is awarded to approximately 19 SIUE graduate students per year. Though highly competitive, the award is worth the additional application procedure as it includes a monthly stipend, as well as waiver of tuition for the awardee's 9-month academic year. The amount of the stipend is $8,370 ($930 per month). Please note that students must already have been admitted to a degree-granting graduate program before applying for the CGA. For more information on the application procedure, visit the graduate school's site.

Other SIUE Assistantship Opportunities

Other SIUE departments and/or faculty occasionally have assistantship opportunities that are ideal for students in our department. To learn about these opportunities, visit the Graduate School's assistantship page.

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